SPECIAL INTEREST DAYS PLANNED FOR 2017/8
Hazel Buchanan is responsible for this page

These will be held at St Michael's Centre or the Priory Centre starting at 10.30 am


Friday 13 October 2017 Recusancy in Abergavenny and the Marches

Following the acquisition of the Gunter Mansion by the Welsh Georgian Trust earlier this year, the study day will explore how covert Catholic activity persisted in Abergavenny and the Marches in the years after the Reformation and, in particular, how the Gunter family provided a secret chapel and meeting place for Catholics in Abergavenny.

The four speakers at the study day are Dom Aidan Bellenger, Dr Hannah Thomas, Frank Olding and Dr Richard Allen.

Dom Aidan Bellenger, past Abbot of Downside, is a writer and historian whose talk 'Catholic Hierarchy in the post reformation period 1558-1850 in England and Wales ' will explain where priests were trained, how they lodged with powerful catholic families and how they ministered to the substantial number of outlawed Catholics that remained in Abergavenny and the Marches.

Dr Hannah Thomas is currently a lecturer at Durham University and has studied the history of the Jesuits' College and library that was set up at the Cwm outside Monmouth in the beginning of the 17th century. The 'house' was eventually supressed in 1678 after the Titus Oates plot which saw the arrest and execution of the last Catholic Martyr in England, St. David Lewis who was born in Abergavenny and is buried in Usk. Her talk is entitled 'The Society of Jesus c1600-1679: Rediscovering the Cwm Library at Hereford Cathedral'.

Frank Olding is a well know local historian whose talk 'Recusant Literature in Monmouthshire 1570-1781' will concentrate on the secret presses that were set up by Catholics to print and distribute prayer books and information in Welsh and English.

Dr Richard Allen is a reader of Early Modern Cultural History at the University of South Wales. His talk 'Everyday life in a seventeenth century Catholic household: the Gunter family of Abergavenny' will tie in with the acquisition of the Gunter Mansion by the Welsh Georgian Trust. In 1907, a secret catholic chapel was rediscovered in the attic together with a painting of the Adoration of the Magi and other artefacts and inscriptions indicating that the room had been used as a place of worship by Catholics. It is known that the priests David Lewis and John Kemble (from just across the border in Herefordshire) said Mass in this chapel.

The cost of the day will be £30 to include a light lunch and refreshments.
The day starts at 10 am and will finish by 4.30 pm.
Places will be allocated on a first come-first served basis.
Cheques made payable to MDFAS should be sent with the booking form to
Rupert Otten
Middle Hunt House, Walterstone HR20DY
Email: rupertotten@gmail.com
Tel: 01873 860359
and will be presented one month before the event.

We can accept payment on line. Please telephone or email to obtain our bank details.

For pro forma please click here

Gunter Mansion

Gunter Mansion today

Friday 2nd March 2018 Anglo Saxon England led by Imogen Corrigan


We were very fortunate to have Imogen Corrigan as a lecturer in July this year, delivering a fascinating, informative and well illustrated lecture on Fra Filippo Lippi. Imogen originally spent 20 years in the British Army but then changed career completely, by turning to a lifelong interest. She graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in medieval history from the University of Kent. She works as a freelance lecturer and has run a number of lecture/ study tours throughout the UK and England and often lectures on board ship.
The Day of Special Interest offers three lectures. The first lecture 'The First Prize' gives an insight into the Glories of Anglo Saxon England and its treasures, before the Norman Conquest and why it was so appealing to migrants. The second 'The Significance of the Ship-Burial at Sutton Hoo' features the discovery of the seventh century ship buried at Sutton Hoo and an insight into the extraordinarily rich treasure hoard discovered within the burial mound. The third 'The Vikings are Coming' tells of the Viking Invasions and the havoc they wrought, as well as giving us a closer look at their trading and sea-faring skills and many of their artefacts which still survive.

This Day of Special Interest will be held in St. Mary's Priory Centre on Friday 2nd March 2018. The day will start at 10.30 am, with a coffee break at 11.30. After the second session, there will be a light buffet lunch and the day will end at approximately 3.15 pm.

The cost for the day will be £32 per person, including coffee and lunch. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis. Cheques should be sent with the proforma below to Hazel Buchanan (address below). Cheques will be presented just prior to the event and will only be returned if cancellation occurs one month before the event.

If you wish to attend, complete the proforma click here to download and send it, with a cheque and a stamped, addressed envelope, to
Hazel Buchanan, Tawelfan, 21 Meadow Lane, Coed y Brain, Abergavenny, NP7 7AY
from whom any further information may be obtained (01873 859192).

Please make cheques payable to MDFAS, dated 2nd February 2018 and write ANGLO SAXON DAY on the back

Sutton Hoo ship
Venerable bede
Viking attack


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